Hand & Stone Massage Therapist in New Jersey Arrested for Sex Assault on a Client

| Jan 22, 2024 | Massage Therapists

Kewin Sepulveda Massage Horowitz Law

On January 18, 2024, massage therapist Kewin Sepulveda was arrested and charged with second-degree sexual assault on a client in Bergen County, New Jersey. Sepulveda, 29, of Paterson, was brought to a county jail in Hackensack following a complaint made by a female to the Franklin Lakes Police Department five days earlier. The Franklin Lakes Police Department and the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office Special Victims Unit initiated an investigation, which led to the arrest. Sepulveda has been a licensed massage therapist in New Jersey since 2016. 

According to media reports, the woman reported that Sepulveda performed a massage on her on January 12 at Hand & Stone Massage and Facial Spa in Franklin Lakes, NJ. She alleges that Sepulveda touched her inappropriately and engaged in sexual activity while giving the massage.

Hand & Stone management commented that Sepulveda was terminated when they heard about the arrest and released a public statement. 

“Hand & Stone has an uncompromising commitment to creating and maintaining a safe and respectful environment for its guests and service providers. When the franchise owner of the Franklin Lakes, New Jersey Hand & Stone Massage and Facial Spa learned of the allegations brought against Kewin Sepulveda on Jan. 18, 2024, the massage therapist’s employment was terminated. The accused is not permitted to return to the spa, as Hand & Stone has a zero-tolerance policy related to inappropriate behavior.

The Franklin Lakes Hand & Stone Massage and Facial Spa is an independently owned and operated franchise location. Franchisees adhere to a rigorous spa safety program designed to prioritize the safety of their guests and service providers. All franchise locations are trained on strict hiring and screening tools, therapist training and prevention, and reporting and investigation policies. Additionally, all Hand & Stone guests are provided with a Customer Bill of Rights when they enter the spa and are informed by the massage therapist that an attention button exists under the table if they or the therapist becomes uncomfortable. This is a core part of our spa processes, as it aims to provide a safe and professional experience to all of our customers.”

This is just one of the many disturbing trends of alleged sexual misconduct by massage therapists. Massage therapists occupy positions of trust, and all sexual activity between the massage therapist and clients is strictly prohibited. Sepulveda allegedly violated the massage therapist-patient relationship. A massage therapist may not use his relationship with a client to induce or attempt to induce the patient to engage or to engage or attempt to engage the patient in sexual activity outside the scope of practice or the scope of generally accepted examination or treatment of the patient.

Horowitz Law has filed numerous sexual assault lawsuits against massage therapists for clients who were sexually assaulted during massages at Hand & Stone Massage and Facial Spa, salons, spas, and resorts. If you have been a victim of sexual assault or sexual battery during a massage, or if you know someone who has, please get in touch with our law firm at 888-283-9922 or email sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz at [email protected] for a free consultation.